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English National Football C-Team – A Brief History

Publish Date:04/05/2020
Fact checked by: James Leeland

The C team of England consists of non-league players who represent their country on a national level. In other words, these are all semi-professional football players who play football in their respective non-league competitions.

If you’re new to the world of non-league football, this article is a great starting point to get you going with this type of competition in sports.

Before we describe how the idea of a C team came to be, you should understand that one such squad is actually taking football as seriously as all other professionals out there. All of them are working hard to achieve results and leave nothing to chance because of the effort they put in. To put it differently, playing casino games, such as the ones on getlucky, is always entertaining, but C-team is and has always been more about hard work than about luck.

 

How It All Started

The Non-League national team of England was officially formed back in 1979. All of the players who were part of the squad were semi-professionals playing for clubs that weren’t part of the Premier League or English Football League.

The team, which was called the England National Game XI and the England Semi-Pro national team back then, lasted until 1985, only to disband for 12 years. It was formed again in 1997, and the official name was changed to the England national football C team.

This actually hasn’t changed much. All of the players who are part of the C-team are actually playing for National League clubs. The only thing that’s different in modern times is that these players are now considered professional players.

Who Are Their Opponents?

The thing is — not many nations in the world had a similar concept back in the day. Wales and Scotland followed this, so England took part in the Four Nations Tournament where they measured their strength with Scotland and Wales, along with the team Gibraltar. The Republic of Ireland was the original member, but it was replaced by Gibraltar in 2008.

The C-team then began to expand its number of opponents in order to keep the team alive. Some of the games they played were against other nations’ U23 teams.

The team has won Four Nations Tournament seven times. In May 2008, they won against all three opponents without conceding a single goal, displaying their utmost dominance in the competition. It turned out that the tournament had been abolished after that.

However, the C-team of England took part in the International Challenge Trophy competitions where they managed to reach the win once and reach the finals twice. The first ICT had a round-robin format and the English team won every single game, earning the most points and thus winning the tournament.

Yet they did not manage to be on par with their previous achievements for the second and the third time. They lost to Belgium U21 team in season 2007-09 and to Portugal U23 in season 2011-13.

Who Is the Coach?

The coach of the English C-team is Paul Fairclough. He was also Barnet’s manager, but he decided to leave the club back in December 2008. It’s safe to say that Fairclough has made success with his C-team. What many don’t know is that he also played football back in the ‘80s. Yet, he only made five appearances, representing Cheshunt.

The first-ever person to lead the C-team was Howard Wilkinson, who was the team’s coach during the first three years. He was later replaced by Keith Wright, who was the coach for the next three years.

After the team was re-established in 1997, John Owens was given the role of a coach for five years. Steve Avory came in 2002 and left a year after, only to be replaced by Paul Fairclough, who has been managing the team for more than 17 years now.

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